Thursday, December 21, 2023

Biden's Stock Market vs Trump's

Click here to read the original Cautious Optimism Facebook post with comments

The Cautious Optimism Economics Correspondent has seen a few stories like the one below lauding the Dow Jones Industrial Average hitting a record high (although the S&P 500 and Nasdaq still have not) and cheering on all the "optimism" Americans have now regardless of polls that reflect the very opposite.

Read "Americans haven't been this optimistic about stocks since 2021" at:

There are also plenty of TDS-comments about how "My 401k has done great under Biden. Notice how silent the Trump people are."

As usual the press and these commenters aren't very good at math.

Since Joe Biden's inauguration the Dow Jones average has risen 20.9% from 30,930 to 37,404.

However in that same 2 years and 11 months inflation has pushed the official CPI price level up by 17.6% (assuming you believe the official number).

Therefore adjusted for inflation the Dow is up 2.8% or a measly annualized real return of 0.9%.

Now Donald Trump. In his four years in office the Dow Jones rose 56% from 19,827 to 30,930 while CPI rose 8.2% in four years.

Therefore under Trump the Dow's four year inflation-adjusted gain was 44.2% or an average of 9.6% per year after inflation.

Up an inflation adjusted 2.8% versus up 44.2%. If these commenters could do math maybe they'd realize why Trump's supporters are happy to let them keep talking.

And Trump's stock market numbers exclude the huge surge that began right after Election Night in response to news that a business-friendly candidate would become president. By the time of his inauguration the Dow had already steamed ahead 19.3%, nearly seven times more in ten weeks than Biden in three years when adjusting for inflation.

Adding those ten weeks to Trumps' four years and the Dow rose 72% or 58.9% after inflation for a compounded real rate of return of 11.6%.

So now after inflation Biden is up 2.8% versus Trump up 58.9%.

But reading the press one would think the Biden stock market is the greatest thing to happen to America since the Russia Collusion investigation.

ps. Trump also had to contend with Covid and most U.S. states shutting down their economies near the end of his term, while Biden took over right as the economy had bottomed out and was reopening. But sure, Biden has been so much better for America's  401k's, right?

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